Salon du Chocolate — Paris

logo_sdcFrom October 28 to November  1, this premier chocolate festival at Port de Versailles should not be missed by anyone who loves chocolate.   Celebrating its 22st year, all of the prestigious chocolatiers will be at this event, and a kids workshop and exhibition is held everyday from 11 am-7 pm. Special events include from the finest chocolatiers in Paris and the world.  Activities include a chocolate bookshop, workshops for children (for ages 3-12),  free pasty workshops, and a health show from some of the world’s best chocolatiers. More information can be found here.     Read More »

Paris in the Fall

IMGP1997.JPGA new rhythm begins in Paris with la rentree, when Parisians return from their vacances, and shops re-open all spruced up after a month off.  Yes, France remains a stalwart in the European economy despite the 25 or so days of vacation that Parisians take in a year, with a good chunk of it in August.  The rush of la rentree means waiting in long lines (but be wary of people who coyly cut in front), like a hurricane is about to hit the middle of France along the Seine.  The humming of cars in the streets, the clip clop of high heels walking on the pavement, and the melodic tunes of children talking to their parents on their way to school is the pull of life you see and hear as Paris returns to normalcy. Read More »

Summer in Paris

 

Photograph taken by Hélène Loiré: http://aparisouailleurs.canalblog.com/

Photograph taken by Hélène Loiré: http://aparisouailleurs.canalblog.com/

 

Ice cream cones drip in the sunlight.  Children laugh with delight as they ride the carrousel in the Jardin des Tuileries.  Women in breezy sundresses sit lazily at a café mid-afternoon.  Friends share wine, cheese, and a baguette for a pique-nique in the park. Stars only begin to sparkle in the sky after 10:00 pm, as shimmers of sunlight give the sky a light hue late into the evening.  And traffic hums on the Champs-Élysées well past 1:30 in the morning.

This is summer in Paris.  Read More »

Bastille Day (July 14th)

 

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Photograph by Hélène Loiré: http://aparisouailleurs.canalblog.com/

Celebrations for Le Quartorze de Juillet (14th of July), also commonly known as Bastille Day or La Fête Nationale, mark one of the major party events in Paris for the year.  It commemorates the storming of the Bastille prison and the French revolt against Louis XVI and the French monarchy.  These events ultimately led to years of “terror” with Marie-Antoinette, King Louis XVI, and Read More »

Printemps à Paris (Spring in Paris)

Trees are sprouting leaves, flowers are in bloom, sparrows sing wake-up melodies at dawn, and morning rain cleans the narrow cobble stone streets. It is spring in Paris. With spring sun giving a shimmer of warmth and sunlight from the dull, grey days of winter, people are donning sunglasses, hitting the cafés, and sitting outside on the terraces to take it all in. Children (and adults) tend to skip, not walk, and smile a little more as the sun now pierces through the clouds beating down on them. The jardins are now a venue for a pique-nique lunch, or afternoon snack. Read More »

Paris Winter Sale (Soldes)

soldesParis only has two sanctioned sales during the year — in January just after the Christmas break and in July just before the August holiday.  The winter sale is in full swing through February 21, with many stores now in their second and third markdown.  Unlike sales in the U.S., stores are open mostly during normal hours, except have extended days open on a few Sundays.  While it seems impossible, French law only allows sales during this time period, otherwise stores must get permission from the police to hold discounted sales outside this time period.  The theory behind this is that this protects the small mom and pop shops from heavy discounting by the major giants, like Galeries Lafayette and Printemps, but, in reality, this is a way to preserve price protection and state sanctioned price parity among retailers. Read More »